Vy Duong

Donors' support allows her to help others 

Vy Duong's interest in art began with a yellow plane, drawn in Crayon during preschool in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Vy, a sophomore pursuing a civil engineering major and a double minor in humanitarian engineering and public relations, is a Harvey Scholar and is also part of the McBride Honors Program. Born and raised in Vietnam, Vy came to the United States when she was ten. As a child, she aspired to be an artist, but she realized her true passion was in humanitarian engineering, where she can use her creativity to develop innovative scientific solutions for the benefit of others.

“The Harvey scholarship allowed for me to come in contact with other ambitious students, driven with wildly creative ideas of how to make the world a better place. Being a part of this unique community has encouraged me to dream big and solidified my love for and appreciation of humanitarian works,” she says.

Although her education is now focused on engineering, art is still a major aspect of  her  life. When she moved to the United States, she realized “art is a universal language,” and she relied on this to express her inner thoughts when she felt the initial isolation from being in a completely different environment, often exacerbated by the language barrier.

Vy recently created a piece of artwork for the grand opening of the Starzer Welcome Center. It included three different angles of the building: one with stark and dark lines (to represent the logical mindset of the engineering brain), one done in water colors (to represent the emotional and creative mindset) and the third is the integration of the creative and logical perception of the new building. 

 Now, fully immersed in the Mines culture, Vy can explore the many possibilities around her because of the scholarships she’s received from generous donors. “The scholarship support has relieved my family and me of financial stress that comes with pursuing higher education. This allows me to dedicate more time to my academics and explore more seemingly, far-fetched opportunities, such as traveling abroad. These experiences continue to enhance my understanding of the world and open my eyes to ways I can contribute to making a difference.”